Indians' 22-Game Win Streak Snapped with 4-3 Loss vs. Royals

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistSeptember 16, 2017

Cleveland Indians' Francisco Lindor, left, slides safely into second base for a steal as Kansas City Royals' Whit Merrifield is late with the tag in the fifth inning of a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 15, 2017, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/David Dermer)
David Dermer/Associated Press

The Cleveland Indians' record-setting winning streak is over.                  

The Kansas City Royals got to Trevor Bauer, and their bullpen held the Indians scoreless for the final six innings en route to a 4-3 win Friday at Progressive Field. The loss snapped Cleveland's American League-record winning streak at 22.

The 1916 New York Giants own the MLB record with 26 consecutive wins. 

Brandon Moss and Alcides Escobar each hit solo home runs off Bauer, who gave up four earned runs over 5.1 innings. Jose Ramirez also hit a solo shot for the Indians, who led 3-1 after the first three frames but saw their offense sputter after a hot start.

Yandy Diaz got on base with a single to start the bottom of the ninth, with the Royals likely feeling twinges of deja vu from their Thursday matchup with Cleveland. That night, the Indians came back from a run down in the bottom of the ninth on a Francisco Lindor double and won their 22nd consecutive game in the 10th on a Jay Bruce walk-off double.

Unfortunately for the Indians, it wasn't to be Friday night.

Royals reliever Mike Minor fanned three straight batters to avoid a repeat, with Lindor going down swinging to end the streak. After the game, the Indians stayed on the field, where the sold-out home crowd gave them an extended standing ovation, and the players returned the gesture, via MLB on Twitter: 

"I think our players wanted to show their appreciation," Indians manager Terry Francona said, per USA Today. "It's just been pretty incredible how they've reacted, and we just wanted to show our appreciation because we don't take it for granted." 

The Indians' most recent loss before Friday came Aug. 23 to the Boston Red Sox. At the time the streak began, Cleveland was 69-56 and part of what looked like a close race in the AL Central. The Indians are now 13 games ahead of the Minnesota Twins and are the only AL team to have clinched a playoff spot.

"I don't think anything's over," Francona said. "We showed up today to win. We didn't. We came close. We got the winning run to the plate. We’ll win some of those games.

"To me, this is more a jumping-off point. Where do we go from here? Up. Common sense says you'll lose a game."

The Indians take on the Royals in the third game of their four-game series Saturday afternoon in Cleveland.

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